Grandpa Sam's Thoughts for a New Year

Uploaded 12/29/2023, approx. 31 minute read

One year to another, the classical greeting, the traditional greeting, Happy New Year, sounds more and more delusional, detached from reality, not to say feigned and fake.

So I'm not going to tell you Happy New Year.

This spell didn't work throughout the last 20 years.

Instead of Happy New Year, I'm going to provide you with my Fuddy Daddy Wisdom.

25 points for thought and soul searching and a review of the year past and a preparation, preemptive preparation for the future.

Now, how do you call this what I'm wearing?

Normally we would say in the United Kingdom, pull over sweater and definitely I'm pulling one over you.

So that might apply.

But I think in view of the latest developments in Israel, and I'm in Israeli of course, I'm going to resort to the American Canadian equivalent.

This is a tank top sweater.

Okay, and apropos tanks, let's charge ahead and discuss thoughts for the new year.

Now you can find all these thoughts in the form of memes, most of these thoughts, I haven't posted some of them in the form of memes on my Instagram channel, narcissism with Vaknin.

I have two Instagram channels.

One is not active and one is active.

One is archived and one is active.

So the active one is narcissism with Vaknin and you are more than welcome to follow me.

I promise not to block you more than three times a year.

Okay, Shoshanim, what is it that I have to say to you in my capacity as Santa Claus, as your grandpa?

Number one, it is impossible to be happy in a world or in a relationship steeped in misery.

If you're embedded in an environment where everyone is miserable, everyone is anxious, everyone is out of their minds in a variety of ways, everyone is escaping, everyone is avoiding, you're not likely to be able to be happy.

Happiness is to a very large degree relational.

In the absence of human relations, there's no happiness and whenever everyone around you is depressed and down and sad, you're likely to catch feelings, these type of wrong feelings.

Start by changing your environment.

Start by working on the outside, not on the inside.

Get rid of toxic people.

Surround yourself with happier people, people who can inspire you, people who are superior to you in many ways, can teach you things.

Try to change your environment in other ways.

Activism not narcissistic, not virtue signaling.

Real activism.


Do something about your environment and you will find that your environment reciprocates by changing you for the better.

Now you're perfectly entitled to feel bad and to feel sad and even to feel mad.

It is all right to put yourself and your emotions first ahead of other people and their emotions.

This is healthy.

This is not narcissistic.

It is not the expense of anyone.

You're not harming anyone.

But take care of yourself first.

It's like the famous saying on crashing airplanes.

You know, put on your life vest first before you take care of the children.

So put on your life vest first, you and your emotions, nurture them, maintain them, sustain them, heal them, fix them, cure and save and rescue yourself.

Don't expect for an outsider to come and do this for you.

No one is coming.

The appendage to this is the observation that if you want to really hurt someone who loves you dearly, hurt yourself.

When you're surrounded by people who love you and you are being self-destructive and self-trashing and self-defeating and self-hating and self-hating, when you are ruining yourself and devastating yourself in a variety of ways, you're hurting the people who love you.

It's a great way to do this.

So just go ahead.

If you love them back, you would first and foremost love yourself because they love you.

And if you don't love them back, why are you there?

Isn't it exploitative and abusive to avail yourself of their emotions for you, of their love for you, of their care, of their sacchar?

So think about it before you hurt yourself.

Which leads us to narcissism, of course, because narcissists are self-defeating and self-destructive, albeit very often in a surreptitious, subterranean way, in a way that is covert and difficult to tell.

There are two types of narcissistic shared fantasies.

Now, the narcissist relates and communicates with everyone via a shared fantasy.

Shared fantasy is the way narcissists organize interpersonal relationships and make sense of them.

So they're in a shared fantasy with an intimate partner.

They're in a shared fantasy with a best friend.

They're in a shared fantasy with an employer.

They're in shared fantasy with colleagues, you name it.

They're even in shared fantasy with collectives, such as the nation or a football club.

So the shared fantasy is the organizing principle of the narcissist's life, and they are in romantic relationships, in intimate relationships.

There are two types of narcissistic shared fantasy.

Number one, the fairy tale shared fantasy, where the partner is a princess or a damsel in distress.

And number two, for fake normalcy, where both the narcissist and his or her partner pretend to be having a perfectly normal relationship.

And yes, nowadays, 50% of all narcissists are women.

Hooray for women's lib and their accomplishments.

Now, there are two ways to keep the narcissist in your life if you really hate yourself.

Because the only right strategy with a narcissist is no contact.

But if you insist to stay with a narcissist or if you absolutely have no other choice, which is a very rare case, by the way, but if really you have no other choice, there are two ways to keep the narcissist tethered to you, attached to you, addicted to you and to the shared fantasy in which both of you are embedded.

Number one, tell the narcissist how great and unique he is.

But two, tell the narcissist how needed and indispensable he is.

That should do the trick.

Don't love the narcissist.

Your love is wasted on the narcissist because the narcissist regards himself or herself as unlovable.

The narcissist has a bent object.

Narcissist has a constellation of voices from early childhood, voices inside himself or herself that keep informing the narcissist how unlovable he is because he is unworthy, because he is a failure, because he's stupid, because he's ugly, you name it.

The end, I'm sorry, the end result, the outcome of this incessant transmission is, hey, narcissist, you're unlovable.

Don't bother to be loved.

Don't try to induce love in others.

And if someone loves you, something's wrong.

So the narcissist interprets your love as manipulative faking.

He distrusts your love.

Because remember, the narcissist has failed in the first stages, actually in all the stages of Ericsson's lifespan cycle.

There are eight stages.

In the first stages, trust versus mistrust.

Narcissist gets stuck in mistrust.

He can never trust anyone.

In his childhood, the love of the narcissist mother, the love that the narcissist mother gave to him, or later in life, his father, this love was conditioned on his or her performance.

In intimate settings, the narcissist partners are substitute mothers, they're maternal figures.

So to gain their love, to be rendered lovable, the narcissist feels compelled to perform.

In his mind, love is connected to performance.

He doesn't perform.

He doesn't get loved.

He performs his standard chance to be loved.

So he performs.

And this is the essence of the shared fantasy.

The shared fantasy is performative.

Very often, borderlines and codependence gravitate to the purview and remit and the gravitational field around the black hole that is the narcissist.

But codependence are no less pernicious than narcissists.

You hate me.

You hate me for saying this.

Both the narcissist and the codependent were exposed to early childhood abuse and trauma.

And remember that early childhood abuse and trauma includes any behavior, any parental behavior that does not allow the child to separate from the parent and to become an individual.

Okay, so some children become narcissists in such an environment, such an abusive ambience.

Other children become codependent and so on.

So the codependent and the narcissist share a common type of early childhood, a common etiology, etiopathology.

So the codependent is a kind of inverted, a kind of mirror narcissism.

Codependent controls other people through self-sacrificial submissiveness.

She emotionally blackmails other people by sacrificing herself, by being constantly obedient and submissive.

And in the beck and call of her partner, she is empowered via clingy neediness.

That's her way to control the situation, to prevent abandonment and hurt and modification and so on.

The narcissist on the other hand controls the situation by complying with the codependence wishes by playing the role because the whole thing is a role play.

The shared fantasy is role play writ large.

So the narcissist plays the role expected of him by the codependent or in the case of the borderline, by the borderline, external regulation, constant presence, dominance, bordering on domineering and so on and so forth.

The codependent believes that her neediness, her helplessness guarantee her partner's presence in her life and his interest in her well-being.

If she were to become tomorrow autonomous and independent and so on, he would lose interest in her.

And if her partner is a narcissist, she's pretty, that's pretty true.

That's true.

If the partner is a narcissist, he would look askance.

He would react badly to evolving personal autonomy, independence, self-efficacy and agency.

So you know, the two parties can tell each other, the narcissist can tell, can say to the borderline, you never wanted to make me happy.

You just wanted me to be yours.

And the codependent can receive, reciprocate with the very same sentence.

It's about position, not about the other person's happiness or well-being or accomplishment or self-actualization or development or growth.

The other partner doesn't exist in many ways.

Another topic altogether.

Remember, these are thoughts, thoughts and reveries and all kinds of triggers, if you wish, for the new year.

High IQ.

Many narcissists brag about being geniuses, myself included, of course, first and foremost, perhaps.

But a higher IQ does not translate into success in the absence of other traits, other behaviors.

If you adjust and down with a higher IQ, if you are just hyper intelligent or even intelligent, if all you have is intelligence, forget about it.

You're going to fail in life because you need, in addition to intelligence, you need perseverance - agreeableness, industriousness, stability or self-regulation, humility, a capacity for teamwork which requires minimal empathy and respect for other people, not to hold other people in contempt.

You need mental health.

You need to be mentally healthy.

You need a social support network.

And last but not least, you need a lot of luck.

So just to be a genius means nothing in life.

Many geniuses are homeless.

Many geniuses are incarcerated and the overwhelming vast majority of geniuses are all but forgotten because they couldn't play along.

They couldn't fit in.

They couldn't belong.

They couldn't work together.

They couldn't control themselves and their impulses.

They couldn't delay gratification.

They couldn't mature.

They were immature.

They couldn't be humble, etc., etc.

They couldn't persevere.

They couldn't commit themselves to a course of action.

They couldn't pursue goals.

If you don't have any of this, if you're not a hard worker, for example, if you don't have work ethic, it's done and gone.

Your intelligence is like a key.

But if you don't have the door, the key is useless.


So controlling one's impulses, acting boundary, delaying gratification are very important.

And it's not the same.

It's not the same things as faking it.

Sometimes we see people who are very controlled. They don't act on impulses. They have clear boundaries and they never transgress them or trespass them. They delay gratification.

And we say, "Oh, these people are so fake. They're not spontaneous. They don't give in to their urges and drives and desires and passions. They're not passionate. They're dead. They're fake." It's not true.

It's not true.

To have boundaries, impulse control and delay gratification, that's not too fake.

These behaviors evince respect or even empathy for other people.

And faking it comes from a point of disdain.

When you fake it, you hold other people in contempt. You think they're stupid. You think you can manipulate them. You're being Machiavellian.

So faking implies a haughty, arrogant, superior mindset, in short narcissism, while genuinely trying not to hurt people, not to act on impulses, to respect your boundaries and theirs, to delay gratification, not to impose burdens and costs on other people.

This is not faking. This is self-control and self-discipline.

These are very healthy things.

Healthy psychologically and healthy, of course, socially.

So if you act this way, constantly and consistently, you're not faking it.

Even if you think you're faking it, even if it requires an effort, you're not faking it.

Sometimes people tell me, I prefer someone who fakes being nice. I prefer someone who fakes being kind to someone who is sadistic and abusive.

And they have a point.

We'll come to it a bit later, or maybe just to say that niceness and kindness, their roles and their acquired behavioral scripts, niceness and kindness, by definition, involve acting and the imitation of role models.

Acting and imitation, not faking, there's a big difference between these two, these three.

So even someone who consistently fakes being nice, fakes being kind, is actually nice and kind because to be nice and kind is to act.

And there's a lot of complaints in the Manosphere, in the Red Pill communities, in cell communities, that women fall for fake men, men who fake kindness, who fake niceness.

You would find people, men saying, I'm brutally honest and that's why women dislike me because they want fake men. They want men to fake.

Not true.

Men who fake being nice, men who fake being kind are actually nice and kind.

Ultimately, the experience counts, not the motivation because we can never, we can only speculate about motivation. We can judge only action by action.

That's my view at least.

Of course, if you truly fake your behaviors, it's not going to last and ultimately you're going to be exposed for who you are.

But fake it till you make it.

Habituation has a role, has a way to acquire roles, gender roles, sexual roles and so on.

Imitation and modeling.

When you see someone and he's contemptuous, he holds people in contempt and then later on he's sadistic, he's abusive, he tortures people, he hurts them.

The inclination is to say, ah, he is being sadistic because he disdains people, because he looks down on people, because he holds people in contempt.

That's why he's sadistic. That's not true.

Contempt is not the precursor to sadism, luckily for us.

Contempt is just the excuse that sadists give as to why they're hurting people.

Contempt legitimizes sadism by devaluing the victims of sadism.

It's like the ideology of sadism is contempt.

And sadists, people like sadists, they're afraid to experience positive emotions.

The same goes for a monopoly of other mentally disordered or mentally ill people, for example, narcissists, psychopaths, to some extent, borderlines.

So there are people who are afraid to experience positive emotions only because they dread having to endure negative emotions as well.

If you experience love, you are bound or liable to experience shame.

You can't be selective about emotionality and emotiveness.

You can't emote selectively.

If you decide that you're going to be in touch with your emotions, you're going to experience emotions to the full, be prepared.

It's a package deal.

You're going to experience, you're going to have the experiences of positive emotions, but also negative emotions.

And some people say, "The hell with it.

My shame, my rage, my envy are so overwhelming, so overpowering that I'm terrified of them.

And I don't want to get in touch with my shame.

So I give up on feeling emotions altogether.

I give up on emotions altogether.

I don't want the negative ones and I want the positive ones.

Thank you very much.

So in the tortured minds of these people, intimacy and love are inextricably entangled with pain and shame.

And so they dump the baby with the bathwater, with the bathroom, with the apartment and with the neighborhood.

They get rid of all emotions altogether.

I mentioned impulse control and so on.

That's not always a positive thing.

For example, unlike narcissism and borderlines, covert narcissists are capable of controlling their impulses.

They are capable of postponing gratification.

This renders them a lot more dangerous.

So this is where the fakeness comes in.

They're passive aggressive.

They control impulses and delay gratification all for the wrong reasons.

It's like they accumulate this rage and then they become Chris Watts at some point.

And usually these people, they have expectations of themselves, of life, of the world, of the justice system, of the authorities, of their intimate partners, of their neighbors.

They have expectations which are impossibly unrealistic.

So everyone keeps disappointing them.

Everyone keeps conspiring against them.

They become paranoid.

And when you expectations of yourself are unrealistic, impossibly unrealistic, all your accomplishments, however momentous, all your accomplishments feel like failures.

You're setting yourself up for failure.

In priorities, I report, money, career, fame, having love affairs, siring children, they're all intended to fend off inevitable aging and death.

But busy as we are in anticipating the future and trying to outmaneuver the future and outwit the inevitable, the ineluctable death that is looming, the grim reaper, as we are busy trying to con deceive the grim reaper by having children, by creating businesses, by writing books, by having fun, you know, all the time.

It's a death verdict.

We are like on death row.

And while we're doing this, we neglect the present.

We ignore our nearest and dearest other people and life itself.

A preoccupation with age, with health, with death is unhealthy, is pathological because it requires the opposite of mindfulness, a sacrifice of being present at the moment, and inability to appreciate and gauge the beauty and charm and giftedness of people around you, of other people, of emotions, of interactions, of nature, and so on.

Focus on the future.

Focus on the past are pathologies.

When you're focused on the past, you're obsessed, you ruminate, you're fixated.

When you're focused on the future, you're anxious, you catastrophize.

These are pathological defense mechanisms.

Nowadays, people very often are preoccupied with prolonging their lives, with their health, with their age, and this shows you how malignant and pathologized our society is.

There are other indications.

Nowadays, for example, honesty is considered to be a form of deplorable aggression.

Truth telling is misperceived as an attempt to victimize, hence, hence, political correctness.

Confirmation bias and victimhood rule.

Charlatans and con artists are having a field day pretending to be scholars.

Everything is exact and fake.

People live lives that they hate.

Most people hate their lives.

This is why the explosion in suicidality, in depression, in anxiety, because people hate their lives and they hate themselves in their lives.

And so living a life that you hate or a life that you fear is always way worse than death.

A life of unremitting shame and humiliation is the same as experiencing death while you're alive.

And this is the source of the narcissist envy.

Narcissists are envious, but they're never envious of who you are. They never want to become you because they consider themselves perfect specimen of the human species, the next stage in evolution.

Why would they want to degrade themselves and become you?

So narcissists are never envious of who you are. They are, however, envious of your possessions, of your accomplishments, of your traits.

For example, if you are young, they're very envious of your youth. If you're successful in dating, they're envious of that.

So they're envious of everything you do, everything you own, and the kind of traits and behaviors that provide you with a competitive advantage, but never, they're never envious of your essence, of your quiddity, of who you truly are.

And this is precisely why narcissists regard your independence and autonomy, personal autonomy, as a threat.

When you're independent of the narcissist, he fears, when I say he, it's a she-or, the narcissist fears what you might do, abandon him, for example, betray him.

So when you're independent, the narcissist fears you.

And when you are dependent on him, he holds you in contempt.

So it's like there's no winning strategy here. It's a no-win situation. You can't win.

The narcissist dreads your agency, your personal autonomy, your self-efficacy, he dreads that.

And on the other hand, he derides and decries your dependency, your emotionality, your empathy, your love.

These are weaknesses.

So you can't get it right with the narcissist.

That's why you should never be with the narcissist, because the narcissist sets you up for perpetual failure.

Love is a strange thing. A man or a woman can physically fit into the heart of a whale. It's a fact, by the way.

And sometimes a whale can fit into the right human heart if it's big enough.

But some people are heartless. And no heart, no matter how big, can accommodate these people.

They are the narcissists and the psychopaths.

Don't give your heart away. Don't open it up to these people. They will tear it apart.

More generally, there are only two ways to attain contentment, if not happiness.

Happiness is overrated. It will define, so we will use the word contentment.

The only two ways to attain it, either to have it all, to have actualized and realized and materialized all their dreams and wishes and fantasies, or to have nothing whatsoever.

When you have nothing whatsoever, you're truly free. Freedom is just another name for happiness.

And when you have it all, you're also free because you're self-sufficient. You don't need anyone.

And this is the reason people seek self-sufficiency, atomize themselves.

Today, two-thirds of men are single and one-third of women, lifelong singles by choice, because they have discovered the joy of being independent of other people in an environment where other people are unreliable, narcissistic, entitled, treacherous, abusive, perhaps atomization, aloneness as opposed to loneliness, self-sufficiency, self-containment.

Perhaps these are rational strategies.

And even as we become more and more private, even as we refuse to share our lives with others, we choose singlehood and aloneness as lifestyles and life strategies, life plans.

And as we do this, we reach out to other people.

But we do this via exhibitionism and ostentation.

Take for example psychotherapy or sex. These used to be private, intimate activities. Now they are both public, ostentatious, online spectacles.

That's our way of having it without paying the costs, being in touch with other people, but pulling the plug whenever we want to, controlling the interaction totally.

It's fake socializing.

People incapable of happiness.

People who cannot do intimacy.

They reject life.

And they reject life because life is a hurtful reminder of what could have been and will never transpire.

Life reminds them of their shortcomings and deficiencies and inadequacies.

So they avoid life altogether.

And they reach out to life via simulacra, simulations.

They interact through via screens.

It's all make-believe.

It's all make-believe.

It's a simulation of happiness, of social life and of life in general.

The narcissist's credo is "I refuse to regard life as a territory to be conquered. I don't consider life a ladder to climb or a destination to strive for."

The narcissist treats life as a theme park with myriad carnival attractions. A toy store with infinite offerings. A mall with endless rows of alluring shops.

The narcissist commits to nothing. He invests in nothing. Ever.

The narcissist is a tourist on this planet, not a citizen of it.

The narcissist's time here is too precious to be wasted on being earnest. The narcissist's only constants change. The desultory. The adventurous. The itinerant. It's passing in the night. Move on people. There's nothing to see here. This provokes a lot of anxiety in people around the narcissist.

The more narcissistic our civilization becomes, the more anxious we are. People with anxiety disorders become anxious also when they anticipate forthcoming anxiety or panic attacks.

So this is kind of a secondary anxiety. They are subject to anxiety disorder and then they are anxious about their own anxiety disorder.

But at the core, people are anxious because life is inexplicable. Sensless. Meaningless. Random. They have lost all the fictitious narratives that gave us direction, organization, structure, order, the promise of the future made sense of our experiences. Religion, for example. The nation state even. Society. Hierarchical society.

So anxiety is a rational reaction and depression. It's a rational reaction to our world today.

And as I said at the beginning, the only way to overcome all this is to get out there, start to change your environment, start small, don't be grandiose, but your efforts will show and accumulate. Choose things you can tackle and cope with successfully, collaborate with others, change the world one beat at a time and you will have changed yourself and your prospects for a life well lived and for happiness.

So what to say?

Happy New Year.

Maybe have a new year of inner peace and outer peace.

Signing off, great person.

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